How to Select the Top Door Type for Your Garage

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Choosing a garage door is not always easy since it requires considering climate peculiarities, the need for further maintenance, repair, durability, price, and more. Also, you should consider the aesthetic option because the garage door should match the overall style of your house and, if necessary, be easy to customize. 

Steel Garage Door


  • Extra durable;
  • Low cost.


  • Poor insulation;
  • Easy to scratch.

As a rule, such panels are made of 24-ga steel. However, you may also find 26-ga and 28-ga steel options. In the market, you can find such doors with multiple window options and design features (for example, an embossed wood-grain pattern), which is explained by the high demand for them. 

While selecting among different steel doors, it is necessary to consider the topcoat. Pay attention to polyester or a baked-on primer since they provide the best protection against rust. In fact, corrosion of the lower parts is a common thing that happens with such doors. It is another reason to wash steel doors at least 2 times a year to remove minor dirt and grime.

Wood Garage Doors


  • Saving money on insulation;
  • Perfect for customization.


  • High cost;
  • Require regular maintenance. 

Garage doors made of wood cost $3,500 on average, but often, the price reaches $6,000 or more. Since it is heavy-weight and specific material, such door installation will cost you an extra $1,000 (on average) if you hire a professional.

At the same time, wood is the perfect option if you want to bring a unique elegance to the exterior or if you are aiming for an eco-friendly option. Such doors often come with multiple additional solutions like hemlock frames, hardboard panels, etc. Also, wood is an easy-to-customize material. You may quickly change the door’s outlook to match your stucco or a stone facade.

Along with a high cost, wood garage doors require maintenance. It will result in extra spending on protection against rotting, pain fading, etc. Wood is a natural insulation material with an average R-value of about 2.17. As with steel, this material is demanding for the climate. It is better to use in regions with mild weather without serious changes in temperature and humidity. 

(Source – Unsplash)

Aluminium Garage Doors


  • Lightweight and low-cost maintenance;
  • Natural protection against corrosion.


  • Requires extra insulation;
  • Less durability compared to fiberglass or steel.

These garage doors often come with multiple window options, like those made of steel. In most cases, these are eye-catching solutions that match literally any exterior. Aluminum is lighter than wood or steel, so such doors are much easier to operate.

For example, you can cope with them yourself if there are problems with the garage door lifting mechanism. Since aluminum has natural anti-rust characteristics, such doors often come only with anodized or powder color coating. At the same time, such a door can easily get dents because of harsh wind or a tree branch that fell.

Plus, you should be ready to spend more on insulation. This material has high thermal conductivity and poorly keeps the inside temperature stable. So, do not neglect to hire professionals to properly insulate your garage or do it yourself.

Vinyl Garage Door


  • High durability;
  • Cost-effective.


  • Requires additional insulation;
  • Poor paint adhesion.

Vinyl (or polyvinyl chloride) is a perfect option if you want to balance cost-effectiveness and high durability. It can easily withstand harsh winds, extreme temperatures, and changes in humidity. Since it does not rust, you do not need to regularly inspect it for scratches that may lead to rust, as in the case of steel doors.

In the modern market, you can find various vinyl colors that can match literally any house design. But if you decide to customize it by adding new colors, the paint will fade soon unless you use special coats.

(Source – Unsplash)

Garage Doors Comparison 

Check the table below to better understand and compare key garage door features.

Door type  Average Cost  Durability  Maintenance  Energy Efficiency  Average warranty 
Wood About $3,500 High  High High 3-5 years
Steel $1,200 High Low Medium 10 years
Aluminum $250 – $2,000 Low Medium Low 2-3 years
Vinyl $1,200-$2,600 High Low Medium Lifetime

Despite the same materials, they may differ from one manufacturer of garage doors to another. This is the reason always to check technical documentation before buying.